Michaela Mayer hasn’t given up on her quest to get back together with Alicia Baumgardner.
Her first step towards achieving that goal is meeting the only fighter to ever lose to the current Unified Junior Lightweight Champion.
BoxingScene.com has learned that Mayer has rigorous plans in place for her next match against two-time former WBO Junior Welterweight Titleist Cristina Rinaldatu. The fight will take place on a lightweight basis, but the exact timeframe and location are still under discussion until this is published.
“If it’s on the map, it’s moving,” a source familiar with such talks joked to BoxingScene.com, who declined to comment further.
No Smoke Boxing’s Darshan Desai was the first to break the news of the matchup between the former titleists.
For Mayer (17-1, 5 KOs), the fight will be his first since losing the direct/WBC/IBF/WBO 130-pound title in London on October 15 by a narrow majority to Baumgardner. It will be the first match. Mayer suffered his first loss as a professional, ending his title reign after winning his WBO belt two years ago. She added her IBF belt in her thrilling 10-round unanimous decision against Maiba her Hamadush last November 5 in Las Vegas.
Efforts to secure a rematch with Baumgardner (13-1, 7KOs) went nowhere. Because the current unified champion instead sought an undisputed championship showdown with WBA titlelist Hyun-Mi Choi. Baumgardner’s wish was fulfilled to some extent. With Choi downgraded to “Champion of the Depression”, she can still bid for the vacant WBA belt.
As BoxingScene.com previously reported, Baumgardner will face France’s Elhem Mekhaled on February 4 at Madison Square Garden in New York City.
Mayer will set times by fighting at lightweight, but this is just a way to keep from shrinking to 130 for a non-title fight. A 2016 U.S. Olympian and former unified champion from Los Angeles, he is currently based in his Springs, Colorado, Colorado, but as a professional he has gone from 129¼ to 130½ lbs. has maintained a narrow weight range.
The fight at lightweight is profitable for her, but it’s also a degree of confession for Rinara Datou (14-2, 6 KOs), who has fought at junior welterweight in her last five fights. Rinalda Tou — Dominican-born boxer based in Athens. GREECE—In July 2018, the weight was lifted shortly after a split decision win over Baumgardner, who fought at the junior lightweight limit.
She won the WBO 140-pound title in March 2019 by defeating then-undefeated Kandy Wyatt by six-round knockout. After she made one successful defense, she lost to the legendary Katie Taylor in November 2019. She holds the lightweight title.
Rinalda Tou regained his old title with a victory over Prisca Biko in February 2020. She was unable to defend due to a combination of the pandemic and subsequent pregnancy and was stripped of her belt in accordance with WBO rules.
England’s Shantell Cameron has won the WBO title at junior welterweight, along with all other major crowns. She took the undisputed 10-round points victory over Jessica McCaskill, who was the undisputed welterweight champion at the time she shed her weight for her November 5 clash in Abu Dhabi. Completed the run.
Rinalda Tou was installed as a mandatory challenger and the fight was ordered less than a week after Cameron’s undisputed championship coronation, guaranteeing a shot to the winner.
As reported by BoxingScene.com, the two sides were unable to reach an agreement, prompting the WBO to send the fight to a yet-to-be-announced purse bid. Rinalda Tou’s side lobbied for a 50/50 purse split given his status as a former champion who had never lost a belt in the ring. His 75/25 split in Cameron’s favor acted as a dealbreaker, leading Rinalda Tou’s team instead to entertain a much more lucrative offer for Mayer to face next.
Jake Donovan is a Senior Writer at BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox